Senegal Population 2023 (Live)


According to current projections, Senegal’s population is expected to grow for the rest of the century. The population, which sits at 16.74 million in 2020, is projected to surpass 50 million by 2077 and will end the century at 63.02 million, almost quadruple its current population.

Senegal is currently growing at a rate of 2.75%, adding over 447,000 people to the population per year despite negative net migration. This is due to Senegal’s high fertility rate of 4.65 births per woman. Contraceptives are still considered taboo in Senegalese society with only about 13% of the population using contraceptives. This explains the high fertility rate.

Like many other African countries with rapid population growth, Senegal faces challenges with education, health care, resource depletion, and economic development as the population growth outpaces these things.

Population Rank
Growth Rate
2023 World Percentage
Land Area
The current population of Senegal is 17,879,968 based on projections of the latest United Nations data. The UN estimates the July 1, 2023 population at 17,763,163.

Senegal Growth Rate

Senegal Population 2023 (Live)

Senegal Population Clock

Senegal Population (as of 10/2/2023)17,879,968
Last UN Estimate (July 1, 2023)17,763,163
Births per Day1,540
Deaths per Day243
Migrations per Day-55
Net Change per Day1,243
Population Change Since Jan. 1341,825

Components of Population Change

One birth every 56 seconds
One death every 5.93 minutes
One emigrant every 26.18 minutes
Net gain of one person every 1.17 minutes

Senegal Population Clock

Senegal Area and Population Density

Senegal's population has grown from 9.9 million at the 2002 census. More than 42% of the population lives in rural areas, with a population density that varies from 77 people per square kilometer to 2 people per square kilometer in the arid eastern region of the country. The average population density for the country is 169 people per square mile (68 people per square kilometer), which ranks 134th in the world. The country covers 75,951 square miles (196,710 square kilometers) and is on the west coast of Africa between Mauritania and Guinea-Bissau.

Largest Cities in Senegal

Just under half of the people of Senegal live in urban areas, and the largest city is Dakar with a population of 1,146,053, and over 2.4 million people in the greater metropolitan area. The next largest city is the holy city of Touba with a population of 529,176, which has only been in existence since 1963. The third largest city is Rufisque, located on the western side of Senegal, which a population of 490,694. Rufisque has fallen into disrepair in recent years and is one area of Senegal where the population is declining. Other notable cities include Thiès, Ziguinchor, Kaolack, Saint-Louis, M'Bour, and Diourbel, all of which have populations over 100,000.

Senegal Population Density Map

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Senegal Population by Year (Historical)

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Senegal Population by Year (Projections)

Senegal Population Pyramid 2023

Senegal Median Age







Senegal Population by Age

There are people over age 18 in Senegal.

Census Years

Senegal Population Pyramid

Senegal Demographics

Senegal is a very ethnically diverse country with many languages spoken by its residents. The Wolof represents the largest ethnic group at 43%. The Fula and Toucouleur are the second-largest group at 24%, followed by the Serer (14.7%), Jola (4%), Mandinka (3%), Maurers, Bassari, Soninke, and other communities.

There are about 24,000 refugees and asylum seekers in Senegal, most of whom are from Mauritania. There are also nearly 50,000 Europeans, most of whom are French, and Lebanese people in the country, along with small groups of Moroccans and Mauritanians. In urban areas, there are small groups of Vietnamese and a growing number of Chinese immigrant traders.

Senegal Religion, Economy and Politics

Senegal is an extremely religious country, with almost 100% claiming to follow one. The predominant religion is Islam, which is practiced by 94% of the population, the Christian community makes up 5%, and 1% practice a traditional African religion. Within the Muslim population, most practice Sunni Islam, and only 1% practice Ahmadiyya Islam. Sufism, or Islamic Mysticism, is represented by several brotherhoods: Tijanism, Mouridism, Qadiriyya, and Layenism.

As a city with relatively few cities or natural resources, the economy in Senegal is largely held together through the trade of fish, phosphates, nuts, and tourism industries. The agriculture industry is very volatile due to unpredictable weather conditions. Other than their own economy, Senegal relies heavily on foreign aid, making up nearly a third of the country's overall government spending. Even though the economy in Senegal is considered to be pretty stable, nearly half of the citizens are living below the poverty line.

Senegal Population History

Humans have inhabited the land that is currently known as Senegal since long before any thorough history was documented. Starting in the 1400s, a different European country laid stake in the area for four consecutive centuries, starting with the Portuguese, followed by the Dutch, French and then the British in the 1700s. In 1816, Britain returned the land to the French, making Senegal a part of French West Africa. Although Senegal remained tied to the French, they spent much of the 20th century asserting their independence, drawing up their own constitution and introducing a three-party political system.

Senegal Population Rank 2023
Area (km²)
2023 Growth Rate
$14.60 Bn

Senegal - General Info